Eddie Park is tucked away in a sleepy residential corner of South Pas. I found it a few months ago when I was driving around trying to get my cranky daughter to fall asleep in her car seat. Instead, we skipped naptime and played in this unusual playground.
The historic Eddie House and grounds were donated to the City of South Pasadena by the Eddie family. And what a donation! Remember when you were a kid and you would walk past that really big house in your neighborhood? The one with the great spreading lawn you were just dying to kick a ball around? Maybe the house was a little run down, a romantic old beauty in need of a new coat of paint, the kind of spooky but marvelous place where ghosts like Marion and George Kerby might host flapper parties on nights with a full moon…
That’s this place.
Spending time at Eddie Park feels almost like trespassing. The .75 acre lawn is perfect for playing fetch with your pooch or reading a book under one of the huge shade trees. A group barbeque area is staged around a large open brick fireplace. A Japanese style wooden arched bridge connects part of a long forgotten garden to the edge of the now abandoned driveway. Of course, there are swings and a slide. The Transitional Craftsman house has suffered a few unfortunate alterations – some rather inelegant louvered windows upstairs and virtually all of the original trim painted over – but it retains much of its charm including some spectacular leaded glass. If you peek into the downstairs windows, you’ll see lovely original woodwork and a gorgeous fireplace. Apparently this level is used for Scout meetings and an Alcoholics Anonymous group. The locked sun porch, to my daughter’s consternation, is filled floor to ceiling with toys, art supplies and puzzles. It is used by Pasadena City College for early childhood development classes. Upstairs, we can only wonder. (Maybe that’s where the Kerbys hang out.)